How did the Miami Marlins do in the Fangraphs 1B power rankings?
By Neil Raymond
Miami Marlins first baseman Garrett Cooper is kind of a polarizing player. You either want him replaced or believe that he's going to have a big year in his contract year. I'm a mix of both. I'm not happy with having him as the starter, but am hopeful that he won't be a disappointment as he usually is when the season comes to a close and his final results can be looked at. Fangraphs recently released their 2023 first base rankings...
Garrett Cooper is ranked pretty low on the Fangraphs top first basemen list for 2023.
The Fangraphs rankings are actually organizational rankings and don't just rate the starter. It is however extremely rare that a team's backup options are enough to change the obvious comparisons being between the actual starters. Yuli Gurriel is of course Garrett Cooper's backup if or when he makes the Major League team. The combination of Cooper and Gurriel is the one being judged in these rankings.
Garrett Cooper is projected for a .260/.338/.409 batting line with 12 home runs and 54 RBI in 112 games and 462 plate appearances in 2023. Yuli Gurriel is projected for a .260/.310/.379 batting line with 4 home runs and 26 RBI in 60 games and 243 plate appearances in 2023. Fangraphs clearly was not very high on the combined projected production of both players.
So how high or more accurately how low is Fangraphs on the Miami Marlins first base situation? Apparently not very high, considering they rated The Fish as #21 on their list! The fact that they think that most of the Majors have better situations at first base is pretty sad to read. I don't know if I fully agree with this, after all Garrett Cooper was an All-Star in 2022 and Gurriel has a pretty solid track record.
I do think that the Miami Marlins should've done more to improve at first base. Very little was really done to improve the position and that wasn't acceptable considering Cooper's health track record and Gurriel's age and decline. I would've preferred a better player as a starter at the position.